Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Into the fantastic


For trip into the fantastic, try reading Revelation. I’m making my way through the imagery of glowing robes and horsemen, cosmic battles and terrors that push aside most horror shows today.

More perhaps than any other parts of the Bible, the apocalyptic visions of the end of history and life in the eternal realm are a language of images. Many of these images are fantastic, transcending anything known in empirical reality.” This from The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery.

Revelation is a swirl of colors and numbers, images that can barely be described and probably not visual. We can read the descriptions but how would we put that into a movie?

Yet the themes are simple: good vs. evil, spiritual conflict, God’s power in crushing his enemies and rescuing his people.

Who would have thought that Christian fantasy would include Revelation and Daniel?

I am not suggesting that Revelation and Daniel are only stories. They are God’s Word and useful for teaching, for rebuke, for correction and training in righteousness.

But their genre is apocalyptic, utilizing otherworldly images to suggest a world that transcends ordinary reality.

Themes of judgment, salvation, conflict, and transformation give Revelation an incredible punch, and an assurance to readers that, in the end, God wins.

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